G2A and Factorio developer reach $40K settlement for illegally-obtained keys

G2A is about to make good on an old promise after an investigation revealed that it had previously sold illegal copies of Early Access title Factorio.


A number of developers across the gaming space have taken issue with online retailer G2A over the years. There were many allegations that G2A had engaged in the resale of gaming keys attained through illegal means. The marketplace had insisted that its activities were legitimate, throwing out an offer that it would compensate developers tenfold if it turned out they were selling any of their keys illegally, provided that the developer went through an independent auditor. Factorio developer Wube Software took that offer and the result is a $40,000 settlement between the two parties.


According to a story by GamesIndustry.biz and confirmed by G2A themselves, the retailer and Wube cooperated on an internal audit and discovered that out of 321 illegal keys sold between March and June 2016, 198 were sold on the G2A marketplace. With those 198 keys valued at a total of $3,960 (based on Factorio's $20 base cost), G2A will compensate Wube with a $39,600 payment. While an independent auditor was supposed to be part of the original deal, a breakdown in logistics resulted in the two parties cooperating with each other instead.

This is far from the first time that people in the gaming industry have taken issue with G2A. Developers like No More Robots' Mike Rose and Vlambeer's Rami Ismail had previously urged users to pirate their games rather than buy from G2A, since they'd make the same amount of money anyway. Gearbox had previously worked with G2A on the Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition Collector's Edition, but quickly cut ties with the retailer.

The late John "TotalBiscuit" Bain was also among G2A's most prominent critics. Here's a statement he issued back in April 2017:

As for Factorio, the game remains on Steam Early Access, but also holds the distinction of being the only Early Access title to sit on the Shacknews Community Top 100 Games of the 2010s, placing at #27. There's no 1.0 release date at this time. (Update: As noted in the comments, there is, in fact, a 1.0 date for Factorio. It's set to come out of Early Access in September.)

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From The Chatty
    • reply
      May 20, 2020 1:05 PM

      That seems like a low settlement :(

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        May 20, 2020 1:20 PM

        It's a 10x valuation based on the # of keys they confirmed to be fraudulent (roughly 200 key at $20/key).

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          May 20, 2020 1:37 PM

          Seeing as how they've sold 2 million copies at a cost of somewhere between $20-$30 per copy, I would have to think they pursued this more to piss G2A off and hold their feet to the fire than anything else. Plus the publicity from stories like this.


          I guess the Alpha was selling for $20 and the game's been $30 since EA launch but they've been pretty adamant that they don't believe in sales and that they offer the game at a fair price.


          Interesting to me that they sell it at $30 even. Like, even when you go to places like GOG and Steam where things are usually $29.99, nope, $30.00 even.

          • reply
            May 20, 2020 1:45 PM

            You go back, and the Factorio people were basically going exactly at the deal that G2A put out when they said "we don't deal with illegally obtained keys - prove us wrong, we'll pay you 10x of their value". Factorio people came back with a claim of about 300+ keys from pre v1.0 release so at the $20 price point, so were looking for the $60k-some figure. The two sides sat down, confirmed ~200 keys were truly illegally obtained by G2A and sold by them, so that's what this came to. This wasn't a court thing (though I'm sure lawyers were involved to ink the settlement).

            (This is about when G2A put out its 10x deal : https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/346144/Developers_and_G2A_clash_over_the_impact_of_grey_market_keys_on_indies.php )

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      May 20, 2020 1:07 PM

      I forgot that Gearbox was in bed with G2A for a bit. Haha ah makes sense really

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      May 20, 2020 1:18 PM

      The end of the article states that Factorio doesn't have a release date, however, they previously did announce that Sept. 25, 2020 would be the release date (before all this coronavirus stuff happened).
      The virus may have affected the date, but I believe the intent is to release this year as close to that date as possible..

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      May 20, 2020 1:21 PM

      There's no 1.0 release date at this time.

      Actually they've set September 25, 2020 as the date

      I've been playing this game a lot lately and I like it. If I could sum it up in one sentence that would be: Goddammit, I need more iron plates.

      • reply
        May 20, 2020 1:22 PM

        I used to have a family. Now I have a factory.

        5/5 stars.

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        May 20, 2020 4:49 PM

        The factory must grow

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